The 2018 Kansas City Chiefs are putting the Alex Smith checkdown days into their rear view mirror. Mahomes is now the man in KC. No 'Hill' is too steep to climb as they are legitimately in the 'Hunt' for a Super Bowl title (okay, I've hit my quota for puns). Obviously, offense isn’t an issue for this franchise. The other side of the ball, however, has more holes in it than a Michael Bay movie plot.
The Chiefs are poised to set the dubious record of most yards allowed by any defense in a season ever - 7,491 yards of offense, or over 4.25 miles. Hell, I've never even walked that far before. It's been said time and again that defense wins championships. But fear not, Chiefs believers, because that’s only partially true. In fact there were four Super Bowl winners that had mediocre to bad defenses. Now that's out of a whopping 52 championships, but remember what the immortal Lloyd Christmas always preached: "So you're saying there's a chance."
The 2006 Indianapolis Colts gave up 360 points during the regular season and over 5,300 yards of offense, ranking them in the bottom third of the NFL. Of course they were quarterbacked by a future Hall of Famer in Peyton Manning and had the second-highest scoring team in the NFL that season, so that may have helped.
One season later, the New York football Giants (Why do they keep saying that? There hasn’t been a New York baseball Giants since 1958. Let it go already, fellas.) took home the Lombardi Trophy with the 17th best defense in the league, outscoring their opponents by a grand total of 22 points on the year. Basically when they were good they were very good and when they were bad, they sucked like a Flowbee on steroids.
In 2009, a painful year in the NFL for yours truly, the New Orleans Saints had the 20th ranked defense for points allowed and 25th in yards allowed. Of course when you put a bounty on the opposing quarterback in the NFC title game…never mind. I can’t relive this.
My final example is the 2011 New York Giants, again. This plucky squad won just nine regular season games, allowed 400 points and over 6,000 yards of offense. They had a three-game stretch where they allowed 121 points (that's over 40 a game for you 'I hate math' folks). Somehow they pulled it all together come playoff time and dumped the Falcons, Packers, 49ers, and the New England Patriots. Rejoice!
So don’t fret too much about your porous defense, Chiefs fans, even though it ain't looking great at this point. There’s one statistic that should perk you up. No team has ever lost a Super Bowl by outscoring its opponents. Although I'm sure the Falcons could find a way.
Until next time, be well, drink plenty of fluids, and Eff Tom Brady.
Mike Zimmer's Ears. You can follow MZE on Twitter.